Packaged Food

As Africa urbanises, food habits change and incomes rise, not only are local businesses investing more in food processing, but also multinationals including AB InBev, Nestle, Coca-Cola, PepsiCo, Arla and many more have joined the race for a piece of the pie. 

This changing face of the industry will surely bring with it opportunities to improve the capacity of the food and agriculture value chain, while bringing with it complexities in regulatory compliance as new technologies get introduced into Africa, while opening doors to an improved, world class operating environment.

The Questions
How does Africa increase local production, processing and packaging of food while boosting the quality and safety of these food products? How does Africa build capacity of local companies to compete with bigger, more resourced and experienced multinationals in matters quality and food safety?
How does Africa manage the quality and safety of imported food products that are set to increase substantially? What mechanisms are there to improve local testing of quality and safety of these products? What regulatory systems should be adopted to ensure they are safe to local consumers?
What kind of mechanisms can African countries adopt to improve quality and safety of locally processed food so that they can access local, regional and international markets? How does Africa build capacity of local regulators to manage adequately improve quality of food products in local markets and abroad?

Crop Production & Storage

Poor quality produce and inadequate storage infrastructure remain some of the biggest challenges faced by Africa, as it seeks to feed its population while also increasing its focus on the regional and export markets. Further, lack of harmonised standards across Africa are also hindering the often talked about intra-African trade in various crop produce, including the most traded crops like grains.

The burden borne by African countries in such common issues including mycotoxins, including Aflatoxins, pesticide residues, microbial and physical contamination weigh heavily on the ability of the Continent to feed its population with safe food, while hampering the vast opportunity of regional and international trade.

The Questions

How can Africa boost production and productivity of its crop produce to take advantage of its vast land resources profitably, sustainably and safely? What is the role of the private and public sectors in boosting productivity and safety?
What are the appropriate technologies Africa can adopt to improve the quality and food safety of its crop produce for local, regional and international markets? How can Africa eliminate barriers to regional trade brought about by differing produce standards and other non-tariff barriers?
How can Africa build a more resilient crop production system that reduces waste at the farm, during distribution, storage and utilisation? What are the appropriate storage and handling technologies that can be adopted in Africa to reduce waste, boost food safety and crop produce quality?

Animal Production & Feed

Poor quality animal products including milk and meat, fish and poultry weigh heavily on the possibility of Africa becoming a preferred source of animal sourced products to the World, blighting the potential that is increasing, as the demand for protein rises.

Many food safety risks arise during milking, slaughter, processing, preparation, storage and distribution of animal products. Chilled or frozen supply chain, vital for the maintenance of animal products in safe and quality conditions, are largely lacking in Africa.

Further, the burden of mycotoxins hangs on the neck of the animal production industry, hindering the realisation of the full potential of the sector.

The Questions

How can the regulators contribute to a more vibrant quality and food safety focus by the animal production sector?
How can animal disease outbreaks be managed in Africa? What is the role of the private and public sectors in managing disease outbreaks, and forestalling them from happening in the first place?
What are the technologies that can be deployed to improve food safety in the animal industry supply chain?

Pharmaceutical Manufacturing & Distribution

The fast growth of the pharmaceuticals industry in Africa has attracted multinationals and local companies to set up manufacturing and distribution infrastructure in African countries as they seek to tap into the region’s growth story.

Local manufacturing, which will eventually lead to better access and pricing to desperately needed medicines, is hindered by poor quality assurance systems, with only a handful of manufacturers meeting the global standards. Further, the patchy regulatory environment continues to place a strain on manufacturers as they seek regional markets that are vital for their growth.

The Questions

How can government regulators contribute to a more vibrant quality and food safety focus by local pharmaceutical manufacturers and distributors? What is the role of the private sector in ensuring compliance to set norms and standards?
How can the Africa build the capacity of pharmaceutical manufacturers to meet basic international quality requirements? How can regulations governing regional trade be streamlined to ensure improved flow of pharmaceutical products in the region?
What are the technologies that can be deployed by pharmaceutical manufacturers and distributors to improve the safety and efficacy of pharmaceutical products throughout the supply chain? How does the region handle counterfeit products?

Hospitality, Restaurants & Catering

Africa has become the latest region to pull in the major fast food, hotel, cafe and other foodservice and hospitality industry giants, driven by the rising economies, urbanisation and the uplift in the tourism sector across the Continent.

This, compounded by the rise in food delivery and e-commerce applications has created new opportunities for entrepreneurs but also opened new avenues where food quality and safety can be compromised in a major way.

The Questions

How can Africa build the capacity of local foodservice and hospitality operators and their local suppliers to improve their internal capacity to meet and exceed world class operational, quality and food safety standards?
How can the food safety culture in the foodservice and hospitality industry be improved? What is the role of the regulatory authorities in enforcing the adoption of the right practices? How can this be enhanced?
What are some of the latest technologies that can be adopted by the food service and hospitality sectors to improve quality and food safety in the industry in Africa?